At Sweet Briar, athletics and physical education are an important part of educating the whole student. Department faculty and staff are committed to enhancing the physical, mental and emotional well-being of all students as an integral part of their educational experience. The instructional program offers a wide range of activities allowing each student to develop skills and knowledge that will contribute to a healthy lifestyle.
Our intercollegiate athletics program provides opportunities for competition for students with advanced skills. High-quality coaching, facilities and funding empower student-athletes to succeed as individuals and team members. Sweet Briar College is a member of the Old Dominion Athletic Conference and NCAA Division III, sponsoring varsity sports for women in cross-country, field hockey, golf, lacrosse, soccer, swimming and tennis.
Sweet Briar’s 3,250-acre campus provides a superb natural setting for jogging, hiking, biking, swimming and many other sports and outdoor activities. The Fitness and Athletics Center includes basketball, tennis, badminton, racquetball, squash and volleyball courts in the Upchurch Field House. Williams Gymnasium houses weight-training equipment, a cardio-fitness center, fencing and aerobics room, an elevated track and Prothro Natatorium, a 25-meter pool. Located on campus are fields for hockey, lacrosse, softball and soccer, as well as six competition and seven practice tennis courts. Recreational, fitness and student club opportunities include basketball, volleyball, touch football, spinning, aerobics and other sports.
At Sweet Briar, students ride and compete at all levels. By teaching riding skills and theory, our instructors foster the kind of partnership between rider and mount that leads to lifelong enjoyment and a deep respect for horses. Our program includes different focus areas: competitions, recreation, training/schooling horses and field riding.
The Harriet Howell Rogers Riding Center, one of the nation’s best college riding facilities, features a 120- by 300-foot indoor arena with a heated viewing area and sound system, an outdoor lighted show ring with a sprinkler system, two additional outdoor rings, modern show-jumping equipment and extensive trails.